Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I awoke this morning at 5:28 a.m. to my phone ringing.  When I left last night, Derek was second case.  They had an opening and moved him to first case, so LT Kristen Josephs called me.  She knew I would want to be there when he went to PACU.

Make nice to the nurses.  They are your connection and your lifeline.

On the way to PACU, Janea, his nurse, looked down and Derek had his remote tucked tight under his arm, up against his chest.  God forbid he lose that remote!

Anyway, I got Derek off to surgery and actually left base.  They wrested control out of my fingertips with me yelling and screaming!  It was awful.  Don't tell anyone, (*shhhh*) but it actually felt good to get away for a little while.  I was a nervous wreck and checked my phone every few minutes for updates, but I knew he would be in surgery for a few hours, and then PACU, and Krystina was there.  He was back in PACU when I got back.  I still like to be there to hear the updates for myself, though, so I did rush back.

It's good to get away once in a while.  When Derek was in ICU, I made sure we got off base every night for dinner.  He was unconscious and then semi-conscious, and the doctors came around on schedule.  He is aware now and likes our company, and the doctors come around at all hours.  It's a control thing.  I admit it.  I'm a control freak.

"Control Freaks Anonymous?  Hi, my name is Siobhan, and I'm a control freak."

But i did get my hair done today.  Cut and colored.  And now "they" (and you know who you are!) can get off my back for another couple of weeks.  I did something for myself.  Can you be quiet now?  Thank you.  That other thing we discussed?  I'm working on it.

As for Derek, surgery went great.  He got his arm back!  Still not functioning, as that will take another couple of surgeries, but it is no longer attached to his chest!  Woot!  He was smiling ear to ear!  No more telling everyone to watch the arm.  No more having to worry about moving the arm and killing the flap.  When he has his CT scan this week, I can relax and not worry so much!  Not as much, anyway.

They also restitched the J/G tube in place since that came undone.  Dr. Bograd replaced the wound vac on the one wound that reopened and said that will just have to heal on its own fromt he bottom up.  And the incision that was made in the hip was closed. 

Dr. Cliffords is coming along.  We will have him trained up nicely before he moves on.  He is a cute kid.  Love his smile.  We have to get him to smile more.

Magnesium is low, potassium is fine.  They are going to do an electrolyte abnormality test tomorrow for an adrenal gland insufficiency.  Oh well.  The cha cha continues.

Dr. West didn't come by today.  Did I scare him off?  He has come by on other surgery days...  Yesterday he was all flustered, putting on his yellow gown upside down, "I am all discombobulated, go away for three days and come back and I'm on the list!"  Damn straight!  Angela mentioned she was worried about me (no need, I'm fine - stubborn, but fine), and he went in and got Derek to gang up on me!  He's on the list.  Apparently, the docs are afraid of being on my list!

I'm not that scary.  I'm out of my element and just trying to do the best I can.

We received some excellent care packages today.  They are very much appreciated, because even though I got out today, it isn't very often that we can get out.  Everything is very much appreciated.  The shampoo and conditioner will keep us smelling good, and the utensils and straws will keep me off dietary's case for a couple of days!  Well, maybe not... the other guys on the floor still need stuff!

Thank you to Mount Saint Dominic Academy in Caldwell, NJ, JoAnn Godshall, Erin McGahuey and Nancy Warner Pedersen! Those care packages and cards really make our day!  I hope I didn't forget anyone!

While reading Derek his cards, he told Krystina, "Stop! Hold on!  They are talking about Chef Boyardee!  He was a real person, you know!"  He gets so into his television.  Loving those zombie shows...

Later, Krystina told him to act his age not his show size.  He said he was.  She asked him what his show size was, seven?  He said he didn't have a shoe size!  "Get owned!"  I love his sense of humor over the whole thing!  This is what is going to get him through this.

Tomorrow the Commanding General from Fort Drum is coming by, Derek has this test scheduled and some friends from NJ are scheduled to come down.  Other than that, we are hanging in the room and working on the healing.

God bless and climb to glory!  Thank you for the continued good wishes and prayers!

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